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Dynamite Outrage

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Dynamite Outrage

Post by Karen on Sun 24 Apr 2011 - 18:29


At Bow-street Police-court on Monday, before Sir James Ingham, John Gilbert Cunningham, alias Dalton, and Harry Burton were further charged with high treason and with being concerned in and causing an explosion at the Tower of London on the 24th of January.
Mr. Poland and Mr. Pollard prosecuted on behalf of the Treasury; Mr. Quilliam defended.

Among those occupying seats on the Bench were Mr. Herbert Gladstone, M.P., and Mr. Henry Gladstone.
Louisa Sternham stated that she lived with her husband at 39, Ferdinand-street, Chalk Farm-road. In February last year she was in service as housemaid at the Waverly Hotel, Great Portland-street. On Wednesday, the 20th of February, 1884, she remembered a man coming and asking for a bedroom, and he engaged one on the third-floor. He had a black bag, and stayed till the following Monday, the 25th. On the Saturday, the 23rd, besides the bag he brought, she saw a second bag in his room, about half a yard long. The luggage was very heavy. She saw two overcoats, one a dark one and the other light in colour. While the man who came on the Wednesday was there another man came, and he had a bedroom on the first floor. The second man brought no luggage, but said it was at a station. He went out on the Monday and brought back a brown portmanteau, about the same size as that produced, a small black bag, and a rug. In the room occupied by the first man she saw the trays of two cashboxes, one larger than the other. She also saw some fresh putty. The first man went away between six and seven o'clock on the Monday evening. After he was gone she saw some crumbs, which looked like the crumbs of yellow cheese, and a little wooden box. In her presence the two men appeared not to know each other. When she went to the dining-room door they dropped the conversation she had heard them carrying on. She should know the men if she saw either of them again, but she had not seen them since.
Sir James Ingham asked Mr. Pollard, who was conducting the case in the temporary absence of Mr. Poland, how he connected the prisoners with this.
Mr. Pollard said he proposed to do so by other evidence.
Mrs. Selik, wife of James Selik, of the Waverley Hotel, Great Portland-street, said that in May last on turning over the mattress in the room on the third floor occupied by first man referred to by the last witness, she found the tray of a cashbox. She saw the brown portmanteau which had been produced as belonging to the second man at Paddington Station.

Cross-examined by Mr. Quilliam: No doubt other persons occupied the room between the 25th of February and May, when she found the tray of the cashbox. She only saw the portmanteau for a few minutes when it was brought to her house. She should know the men again, and had not seen them since.
Inspector Swanson proved receiving the various articles found, including 4lb. or 5lb. of putty. The cashbox that the large tray fitted was found in the brown portmanteau at Paddington Station. In that portmanteau a flap was missing, and the flap found at the Waverley Hotel fitted it.
Sarah Ann Beever, 25, Cromer-street, Gray's-inn-road, stated that she was in Westminster Hall on Saturday, Jan. 24. She and a friend were going down the steps from the hall to the crypt at a few minutes after 2. At the second turn of the steps she saw something which she first thought was a quilted petticoat, but when she got to it she saw it was made like a cushion, the material being American cloth. The parcel was 27in. by 20in., and about 2 1/2 in. thick. She was accustomed to cut out calico, and therefore could estimate it. She stooped to turn it and attempted to lift it, and some smoke came from it and caught her eyes. She had previously noticed smoke issuing from it. There was a weight in the middle of it, and she thought she had better leave it. She then went on down the steps and at the bottom of the stairs saw Police-constable Cole. She spoke to Police-constable Cole, and he went towards the parcel, which was smoking more than before. As soon as he saw it he snatched it up and ran with it up the steps to the hall. He was enveloped in smoke. There was a brown mark on the step where it had been lying. Almost immediately afterwards she heard the explosion in the hall. Soon afterwards she heard a second explosion. She was not injured bodily, but felt the effect of the explosion.
James Blake, living at Plaistow, stated that he was in Westminster Hall on Saturday, January 24. He was on the top of the steps leading to the crypt. He smelt something resembling a fuse burning, and saw smoke issuing from something on the steps. He called the attention of Police-constable Cox to it, and then met Police-constable Cole carrying a parcel, from which smoke was proceeding, in his hand. The parcel appeared to be about 24in. by 18in., and a little over an inch in thickness. When Police-constable Cole threw it down, he noticed a number of pockets about 4in. square. There was a kind of yellow substance like cheese inside them. He was not injured except by the shock of the explosion and deafness. On the following Saturday he described to Colonel Majendie what he saw, and he then showed him a cake of stuff which resembled that which he saw in the pockets of the parcel.
Mr. Poland said he should prove hereafter that the cake of stuff shown to the last witness by Colonel Majendie was a cake of the Atlas powder A, found at Paddington Station.
The witness further stated, in reply to Mr. Poland, that the parcel could easily have been fastened round the body underneath a great coat.
Edwin Green, a civil engineer, stated that he lived at 260, Camden-road. On Saturday, January 24, he was in Westminster Hall with his wife and sister-in-law and saw a parcel on the steps leading to the crypt. He noticed a smell like that of a damp fuse. He first saw Police-constable Cox, and then saw Police-constable Cole carrying it up to the hall, and it exploded at his feet. He was very seriously injured, had been unfit for business ever since, and was still suffering. His wife was somewhat injured.
Mr. Poland said he was sorry that Police-constable Cole was unable to attend that day, but he hoped he would be able to come one day next week; and after his evidence he should not carry the evidence further with regard to the explosion at Westminster Hall.
Alfred Chambers, salesman to Mr. Lazarus, 244, Shoreditch, stated that on the 16th of January last Cunningham purchased the coat produced (the one he was wearing when taken into custody.) He said he wanted a great coat much too large for him, to wear over the brown overcoat he was wearing at the time, because he said he felt the cold. Cunningham spoke with an American accent, and the witness said, "I presume you have come from America." He replied, "How? I am a Manchester man, and have come from Manchester." He was in the shop for about half-an-hour. He tried several coats on, and took away the one produced, in a parcel, and paid 16s. 9d. for it.

Cross-examined by Mr. Quilliam: He was certain the prisoner did not say he came from Liverpool.
William Taylor, a tailor's cutter, employed at Messrs. Blamey and Co.'s, of Charing Cross, proved that the pair of trousers found in the portmanteau which was left at Charing-cross Station corresponded in the measurements of the legs and waist with a pair found at Burton's lodgings.
Superintendent Hinds, of the Woolwich Dockyard police, stated that on the 28th of February, 1884, he received the portmanteau which was found at Charing-cross, and had charge of it till Colonel Majendie came. There was about 20lbs. weight of Atlas dynamite. He also deposed to receiving the dynamite which was found at Paddington and Ludgate-hill Stations.
The prisoners were then formally remanded until Monday next, when they will be further remanded till the following Friday, on which day it is expected that the case will be concluded.

Source: The Centaur, Saturday March 21, 1885

Karen Trenouth
Author of: "Epiphany of the Whitechapel Murders"
Author of: "Jack the Ripper: The Satanic Team"

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Re: Dynamite Outrage

Post by Karen on Sun 24 Apr 2011 - 22:48


The hearing of the charges against James Gilbert Cunningham and Harry Burton in connection with the dynamite explosions in London was resumed at Bow-street Police-court last Friday before Sir James Ingham.
Mr. Poland prosecuted on behalf of the Treasury; the prisoners were again represented by Mr. Quilliam, of Liverpool.
Thomas Henry Adamson, of 32, Essex-street, Newcastle-on-Tyne, said: I am a brass finisher. In February last year I was a passenger on board the Donau, which sailed from New York to Southampton. We arrived there on the 20th of February. I recognised the prisoner Burton as a steerage passenger on board that vessel. He had a man with him, a friend of his, I suppose. They were always together. I identified him this morning at this court from among a number of other men.
Cross-examined: I could not say how many steerage passengers there were. I gave a description of both men to Inspector Swanson in March last year.
Elizabeth Becket Herrod, the wife of William Herrod, of Farndon, near Newark, a passenger by the Donau, also identified Burton as coming to Southampton by that vessel. Prisoner landed and boarded at the same house with witness and her husband, viz., Day's Hotel.
Cross-examined: There was a man with him. He was a full-faced young man, not with high cheek bones like Burton. I should know him again if I saw him.
William Herrod, the husband of the last witness, gave similar evidence.
Mr. Quilliam did not cross-examine the witness, but took objection that he had been present in court during the examination of his wife.
The Rev. William Henry Winn, incumbent of Baron's-court, Tyrone, Ireland, said: At the end of May last year I was in London. I remember the explosion at Scotland-yard and St. James's-square. On the morning of the day of the explosion I went from Charing-cross Station to Dover, and returned by the afternoon boat tram at about half-past three. I travelled in a second-class carriage. As the train was leaving Dover a man got into the carriage.
Do you recognise him here? - Yes. I believe that the prisoner Cunningham is the man.
The prisoner Cunningham (in an excited manner): You are a liar. You never saw me in your life before.
Mr. Poland (to witness): Have you any doubt in your own mind? - I have no doubt in my own mind, but I prefer swearing that I believe him to be the man, so as to moderate my evidence. He got into the train in a hurry and in an excited way. He had a small black valise, and put it on the netting over his head. A gentleman came in after him who had travelled down in the same carriage with me in the morning. He had no luggage. There were also in the same compartment a lady and her two daughters, I think. At Cannon-street all the passengers got out. The man I believe to be Cunningham had not spoken all the way up, but at Cannon-street the lady asked me if that was Cannon-street. I said I did not know, and Cunningham said: "Oh, yes; this is Cannon-street." I heard the explosions the same night. The following day I went to Scotland-yard and gave information with reference to the man who had travelled up from Dover with me. On the 2nd of this month I attended at this court and identified Cunningham from among a number of other persons. I picked him out then, but was not as certain as I was afterwards when I saw him in court, and that is the reason why I wish to say that I merely believe he is the man. When I saw him in the room he was rather pale, but in court he had resumed that sallow, yellow colour that I had noticed when coming up from Dover.
Cross-examined: I gave a description at Scotland-yard, which was taken down.
Mr. Quilliam asked for the written description.
Mr. Poland: I do not produce it.
Witness repeated his description, saying that he had described the man as a low-sized, broad-shouldered man. He thought he used the word stumpy. He also said he was of swarthy complexion, and had coarse hands. I have seen woodcuts of both prisoners in the illustrated papers.
Re-examined: When Cunningham entered the carriage, I thought he was a foreigner, but when I heard him speak at Cannon-street my theory was upset. He spoke in an ordinary English tone.
Sergeant Cole of the A division was then called. He appeared very weak, and was accommodated with a chair near the clerk's table. He was also very deaf. He said: On Saturday, the 24th of January last, I was on duty in the crypt of Westminster Hall, a few yards from the bottom of the steps. Some lady called my attention to something on the steps. It appeared to be like a lady's quilted petticoat. I saw smoke issuing from it. I turned it over, and then I saw that it contained a quantity of cakes, the colour of light-brown paper, glazed. There were four rows, with four packets in a row. I picked it up, and as I did so I found that the fire extended more. I noticed that each packet was about half an inch above the other packet. On the top of the parcel there was a strap, and from the top corners at each end there was a piece of something like boot webbing. It appeared to form a band such as could have been tied round the waist. I noticed at one end there was either a button or a hook. It could have been concealed under a great coat or cloak. I should think the weight was about 10 to 12lb. I carried it up the steps, and as I was doing so I found it burning my hand, and I threw it away from me. About a second after it left my hand I saw the flash of the explosion. I don't remember anything after that. I was afterwards taken to the Westminster Hospital, and remained there till last Thursday evening. My ribs had been broken, and I was very much injured. My brother constable Cox had also been injured.
Cross-examined: The parcel could have been carried by a female under a cloak. I think it would have escaped observation if carried by a man under a coat that was sufficiently large.
Col. Vivian Dering Majendie, R.E., examined by Mr. Poland said: I am Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Explosives, and have been so since the passing of the Act of 1875. On the morning of the 28th of February last year I went to Woolwich and saw at the Arsenal the black portmanteau produced. It contained about 20lb. in weight of Atlas powder A, in about 43 cakes. Atlas powder A is a description of lignum dynamite, wood pulp being used as an absorbent for the nitro-glycerine, instead of the kiesselguhr used in the ordinary dynamite. Atlas powder A is a wholly unlicensed preparation of dynamite in this country. It is an explosive of American manufacture, made I believe at the Repauno chemical works, Philadelphia. The mode of exploding it is by detonation in the same way as ordinary dynamite. I also found a small pistol attached to an American clock. (Witness here produced the clock of the pattern known as the "Peep o' Day." The barrel and lock of the pistol, which was a very small one of bright metal, and from which the wooden stock had been removed, were fixed with wire to the interior of the clock, and a connection was made with wire from the alarum spring of the clock to the trigger.) Witness continued: The pistol was loaded with a blank cartridge, that is a cartridge with powder only and without a bullet. In the case of the one produced (that found at Charing-cross), the clock was timed to run down at twelve o'clock. The trigger of the pistol had been pulled and the hammer had fallen, but the cartridge had missed fire. The muzzle of the pistol was directed towards the mouths of some detonators which had been stuck into a cake of dynamite. If the pistol had gone off it would have exploded the dynamite. The pistol was either a Remington, of New York, or an imitation of a Remington. The cartridge was one manufactured by the Union Metallic Cartridge Company, of Bridgeport, Connecticut. Witness proceeded to give similar evidence with regard to the portmanteau found at the Paddington Station. Colonel Majendie next detailed his examination of the Victoria Station after the explosion on the 26th February, 1884. The debris was sifted and several pieces of metal were found, giving indications of an exploded metal case. There was also found the spring of a clock. The explosion was of a character that had undoubtedly been caused by an explosive of the nitro compound class, and Atlas powder A belonged to that class. Witness also examined the contents of the bag found on May the 30th at the foot of the Nelson Column, and found them to contain dynamite of a kind identical with that found in the portmanteaus at Paddington and Charing-cross. In the bag found at the base of the Nelson Column there was no clockwork, but an ordinary safety blasting fuse - a time fuse, attached to which were two detonators. That was the common way of exploding dynamite. He was of opinion that the explosions in the area of the Junior Carlton Club and at Sir Watkin Williams Wynn's house were caused by an explosive of the nitro-compound class. The explosion at Scotland-yard might have been caused by 5lb. of Atlas powder, or even less, and those in St. James's square by considerably less - perhaps 2lb. There was no trace of any clockwork found at any of those places. Colonel Majendie, in continuing his evidence, referred to the other explosions which had taken place, and expressed a decided opinion that they had been caused by an explosive of nitro-compound class. The detonator which had been given to him (which was found in Cunningham's box at Great Prescott-street) - was one of those which could be attached to a time fuse.
Cross-examined: The detonator bore the mark of an eagle on the end, which he took to be a trade mark.
Colonel Ford, one of her Majesty's Inspectors of Explosives, gave evidence of a similar character regarding the bag discovered at Ludgate-hill Station.
This concluded the case for the Crown, and

Mr. Poland, addressing the magistrate, said: After careful consideration it has been decided that I should ask you to commit the prisoners for trial for the offence of treason felony, under the statute 11th and 12th Victoria, chap. 12, sec. 3; "If any person whatsoever after the passing of this Act shall within the United Kingdom or without, compass, imagine, invent, devise, or intend to deprive, or depose our Most Gracious Lady the Queen, her heirs or successors from the style, honour, or Royal name of the Imperial Crown of the United Kingdom or of her Majesty's dominions and countries, or to levy war against her Majesty, her heirs, or successors within any part of the United Kingdom, in order to force or constrain or compel her or them to change her of their measures or counsels, or in order to put any force or constraint upon or in order to intimidate or overawe both Houses or either House of Parliament, and such compassings, imaginations, inventions, devices, and intentions being expressed, published and declared by divers overt acts and deeds, every person so offending shall be guilty of felony, and being guilty thereof shall be liable at the discretion of the Court to penal servitude for life."
After a brief conversation, Mr. Quilliam said that he would not address the magistrate.
The two prisoners were then formally called upon, and in answer to the magistrate severally said, "I reserve my defence." They were then removed, and the inquiry, so far as the police-court is concerned, came to an end.

Source: The Centaur, Saturday April 4, 1885

Karen Trenouth
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